MULTI-MODAL LOGISTICS PARK (MMLP)
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- The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways said it has awarded the contract for setting up India’s first multi-modal logistics park (MMLP) near Chennai to Reliance Industries (RIL).
- A systematic logistics network is crucial to economic growth. To develop this sector, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, in October 2017, under the ‘Bharatmala Pariyojana’, mandated the Ministry of Roads Transport and Highways (MoRTH) to develop Multi Model Logistics Parks (MMLP) across the country.
Description of MMLP
- MMLP typically acts as an inter-modal freight-handling facility with mechanised material handling provisions, which contains warehouses, specialized cold chain facilities, freight/ container terminals and bulk/ break-bulk cargo terminals.
- MMLPs include inter-modal connectivity, such as dedicated railway line, access from the prominent highway(s)/ expressway(s) to allow movement of commercial vehicles, and connectivity to an airport or a seaport (or inland waterway terminal).
- For the purposes of reduction in congestion on proposed corridors under the ‘Bharatmala Pariyojana’, and to enhance logistics efficiency and reduce costs related to freight movements, MoRTH has identified 35 locations across India, for the development of MMLPs under the public-private partnership model (PPP).
- Thus, under the PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan (NMP), launched in October 2021, the Road Ministry is developing 35 MMLPs, of which 15 MMLPs are being prioritized in the next three years.
- These MMLPs are proposed to be implemented by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and the National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited ((NHIDCL) in North-East India).
- Since 2017, work has progressed significantly in the implementation of MMLP projects in India.
India’s first MMLP at Mappedu
- The MMLP is strategically located at around 52 km from the Chennai Port, 80 km from Ennore Port and 87 km from Kattupalli Airport and will be a focal point of logistics in the southern region. It is estimated to cater to around 7.17 million tonnes (mt) cargo over 45 years.
- Chennai is an important centre for supply chain and logistics in south India. Also, it has international and domestic connectivity, which makes the MMLP a game-changer for the region.
- The park will offer facilities such as warehouses, cold storages, cargo terminals, custom facilities, truck terminals, accommodation and boarding facilities for truckers. It will allow shippers to choose between different modes of transportation based on their requirements.
- The project being close to Chennai Peripheral Ring Road will connect the Chennai airport, and also the ports of Chennai, Kamarajar and Kattupalli. The project will also serve as secondary market clusters of Ranipet, Ambur, Tirupur and Bengaluru which is home to industries like leather, heavy machinery parts, automobiles, cement, sugar and chemicals, according to a pre-feasibility report.
Significance of MMPLs
- MMPLs will play a crucial role in reducing logistics costs. India’s logistics cost as a percentage of GDP is very high at 16 per cent, while in developed countries such as the US and Europe, it is around 8 per cent. China’s logistics costs are 10 per cent. The government wants to bring down the logistics cost to 10 percent of GDP.